How best to communicate with worried consumers during the coronavirus pandemic is one of the central challenges facing marketers, and a new survey suggests the great majority of marketers in the UK have done just that – by being more compassionate and thoughtful.

According to the Data & Marketing Association (DMA), three-quarters (74%) of senior UK marketers out of a sample of 229 respondents said their brands or clients have shown more compassion and thoughtfulness in response to COVID-19.

The DMA’s online survey, which was conducted in October, revealed that these industry leaders cited an enhanced focus on tailoring content and thoughtful messaging (68%), trying to be useful to consumers (62%) and taking a more customer-centric approach (55%).

In addition, half (50%) pointed to being more generous to essential workers and even reducing marketing spend and volumes (42%) to reduce the impact on consumers during this time.

Survey participants also highlighted the importance of creating a truly ‘customer first’ experience (65%), improving the wellbeing of their own employees (64%) and providing more harmony to society at large (61%).

“The pandemic has had a devastating impact on people and businesses around the world. Although there has been a positive side-effect of coronavirus, in that it has contributed to a significant increase in brands compassionate and thoughtful approaches to how they market to consumers,” said Tim Bond, head of insight at the DMA.

“Over recent years, we have seen that the values and ethics of businesses are becoming an important motive for consumers when considering brands. The message is clear – brands who put people first are more likely to engage and connect with consumers post-lockdown.”

The survey findings chimed with separate DMA research into customer engagement, which confirmed that most consumers (77%) wanted brands to be more compassionate during the pandemic. They felt they should do this by communicating both how they’re helping customers (66%) and supporting their staff (58%).

Sourced from DMA